The Modern Men's Movement

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The Modern Men's Movement

The 1970's saw the intensification of the feminist movement as a social, moral, and political force in the American arena. They focused their attention on the systematic oppression of women in politics and business. They were attacking male chauvinism, dominance, and a social system that relegated females to household duties. By most standards, the feminist movement has been successful in nearly all of its endeavors. The result, however, has left the American male uncertain of his own role in not only the dating arena, but the business, marriage, and society in general. All the things that once made a man desirable now make him the enemy of the advancement of women. The result has been a reactionary "Male" movement. Though not as prominent in the media or politics the feminine counterpart, it has garnered a rather loyal following through the 1980's and 1990's. It focuses not on men's rights, but functions more as a male bonding experience that educates and enlightens men about their new roles. "Created in the mid 1980's, the Mythopoetic men's movement emanates from the works of Robert Bly. His view is that the men's role has lost direction. The men's gatherings are to reconstruct a valid male initiation and role model." (Schocke)

This male movement has been cautiously encouraged by women's groups. Most realize the new pressures being exerted on men by the changes in society and recognize a male movement as a means to finding the new balance. "I believe that 'we', I.e. men and women, need a "men's movement" in the sense of men that have come to understand the evils of patriarchy ... These are men who are prepared to work in harmony with women to create a new society liberated from patriarchy." (Hagan, 14) Women want and need the men's movement as bad or worse then men do. The entire point of the feminist movement is to change men. Though not overtly stated as such, the promotion of women must occur in men's thoughts...
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